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Thread: Military Advisors in Korea: KMAG in Peace and War

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    Council Member jonSlack's Avatar
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    Default Military Advisors in Korea: KMAG in Peace and War

    From Military Advisors in Korea: KMAG in Peace and War by MAJ Robert K. Sawyer

    "The formation of the ROK 26th Regiment in August (1950) was typical of the haste and expediency surrounding KMAG's operations at the time. Early in August the KMAG G-3 Advisor called CPT Frank W. Lukas in from the field and ordered him to activate a new regiment for th ROK 3d Division. Lukas obtained two intrepreters from ROK Army headquarters and got in touch wiht the appropriate ROK Army staff officers in Taegu. These, with the aid of the police and other city officials, drafted youths on the streets of the town, and within a day or two they had nearly 1,000 recruits. As men were drafted, Lukas and his Korean officers formed squads, platoons, companies, and, finally, two battalions. The most intelligent-appearing recruits were designated NCO's and platoon leaders, while the officers who had helped to recruit them became company, battalion, and regimental commanders and staffs. When the two battalions were organized, the KMAG G-4 somehow obtained enough rifles for each man to fire nine rounds of ammunition. Shortly thereafter the regiment, clad in an assortment of civilian clothes, school uniforms, and odds and ends of US Army uniforms, boarded a train at Taegu and traveled east to a sector near P'ohang-dong, where, in less than a week after its activation had been ordered, it entered combat. The ROK 26th Regiment received no formal training until April 1951."
    ...

    "The manner in which the ROK 2d Division was formed was reminiscent of the ROK 26th Regiment's activation many weeks earlier. Early in November BG Francis W. Farrell (KMAG Commander) called MAJ Thomas B. Ross, Assistant G-3 Advisor, to his office and asked him how long it would take him to form another division for the ROK Army. Ross replied that several weeks should be sufficient, whereupon the chief of KMAG laughed and informed the young officer that he expected the division to formed by the following day. There were at that time three Korean personnel centers in the vicinity of Seoul where recruits were gathered before being processed. MAJ Ross visited each of these centers in turn and requested the Koreans in charge to line up recruits in groups of about 200. He designated each group as a company, formed companies into battalions, and designated each center as a regiment. For company officers and noncommissioned officers he, like MAJ Lukas, selected the most intelligent looking men in each group, and then obtained officers from ROK Army headquarters for the division's battalion, regimental, and division commanders and staff. KMAG headquarters scraped together a detachment of advisors and assigned it to the division and, a few days after General Farrell's talk with Ross, the ROK 2d Division left on its first mission."

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    Council Member sullygoarmy's Avatar
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    The Army's Combat Studies Institute Observation Paper 18 focuses on the advisory efforts of Korea, Vietnam and El Salvador. Worth a look if you get a chance:

    http://usacac.army.mil/CAC/csi/OP18RamseyComplete.pdf

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    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Default Bob Ramsey

    Bob Ramsey is the CSI author who put those 2 studies together and continues to work the issues. Bob is a retired Infantry officer and an excellent historian.

    best

    Tom

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    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Default Military Advisors, MAGs and MAAGs

    Thanks JonSlack for an interesting post !

    Do not try to do too much with your own hands. Better the Arabs do it tolerably than that you do it perfectly. It is their war, and you are to help them, not to win it for them. Actually, also, under the very odd conditions of Arabia, your practical work will not be as good as, perhaps, you think it is.1
    —T.E. Lawrence, “Twenty-Seven Articles,” 1917
    My tours in both Korea (UNC-JSA with the Swiss, Swedes and M110s everywhere) and later in Africa with the US Military Mission (now know as an ODC) tried to achieve just what Lawrence said. Sound advice if you can get it work. Turns out, it doesn't always. The Africans were complacent and, in their view, easier to let the American instructor do "it" and we watch...later we'll steal what we can. Afterall, it is free.

    The KATUSAs that I had (32 males) were very hands on. Show me once, now get out of the way. This was 1980 and they were set to take over. I wasn't their advisor, but their instructor.

    Lawrence does have a good point. Our system may not always be the correct one and as an advisor or instructor, we should remain acutely aware of our cultural limitations and/or the manner in which we present our views if we want any of this advice to sink in.

    Regards, Stan

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    Council Member sullygoarmy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    Bob Ramsey is the CSI author who put those 2 studies together and continues to work the issues. Bob is a retired Infantry officer and an excellent historian.

    best

    Tom

    Roger that Tom. Both OPs 18 and 19 are our standard handouts when we (Joint Center for International Security Force Assistance) take our show on the road. OP 19 focuses on "Advice for Advisors" and is a great compilation of articles focused on the advisory missions, roles and challenges.

    Just saw that you already have the links as one of the first threads in this area. Great reading and information.
    Last edited by sullygoarmy; 02-07-2007 at 04:55 PM.

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    Default Looking for Information on KMAG

    I'm having a difficult time finding information on the Korea Military Assistance Group and their work in the '40s. Does anyone know any good sources?
    Here is what I could find
    http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute...les/pub745.pdf

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    Council Member RTK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdaptAndOvercome View Post
    I'm having a difficult time finding information on the Korea Military Assistance Group and their work in the '40s. Does anyone know any good sources?
    Here is what I could find
    http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute...les/pub745.pdf


    Let me point you towards these discussion threads:

    It's Time for an Army Advisor Corps

    Military Advisors in Korea: KMAG in Peace and War

    How about here?

    And lastly this one....
    Last edited by RTK; 09-09-2007 at 09:37 PM. Reason: Additional Information
    Example is better than precept.

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    Thanks, RTK.
    I have to admit my google-fu is weak. Earlier, I tried a search with slightly different terms and got almost nothing.

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    ...these two docs may not be precisely what you're looking for, but you may find them useful:

    The KMAG Advisor: Role and Problems of the Military Advisor in Developing an Indigenous Army for Combat Operations in Korea, Feb 57

    The purpose of this study is to examine: (1) the role of the KMAG advisor; (2) preparation for KMAG duty; (3) elements of the advisory process; (4) the relationship of the advisor to the advisory group; (5) advisors' evaluations of the ROK Army; in order to make recommendation for the optimal operation of KMAG or other advisory groups which may in the future be concerned with the training and guidance of the military forces of foreign nations.

    Journal of Strategic Studies, Mar 02:

    Captain James Hausman, US Army Military Advisor to Korea, 1946–48: The Intelligent Man on the Spot
    Building indigenous armies in Asia with military advisory and aid programs has been a mission of the United States Army for over 100 years. Creation of an indigenous army was an early goal of American occupation policy in Korea, but little support and resources were assigned. Between 1946 and 1948, a minute American advisory effort partially trained and equipped a Korean Army cadre of 25,000 men. The unceasing efforts of a talented American advisor, Captain James Hausman, made success possible. He dominated the small advisory group, was given carte blanche to implement his ideas, and left indelible changes on what became the South Korean Army.

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    Council Member tequila's Avatar
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    This book by Allan R. Millett is very well done.

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    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdaptAndOvercome View Post
    I'm having a difficult time finding information on the Korea Military Assistance Group and their work in the '40s. Does anyone know any good sources?
    Here is what I could find
    http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute...les/pub745.pdf
    Look at the Combat Studies Institute Occasional Papers 18 and 19 by Bob Ramsey. Excellent work on advisors in Korea, VN, and El Salvador

    Advice for Advisors: Suggestions and Observations from Lawrence to the Present, Robert D. Ramsey III. Paper #19 (PDF)

    Advising Indigenous Forces: American Advisors in Korea, Vietnam, and El Salvador, Robert D. Ramsey III

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    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdaptAndOvercome View Post
    I'm having a difficult time finding information on the Korea Military Assistance Group and their work in the '40s. Does anyone know any good sources?
    Here is what I could find
    http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute...les/pub745.pdf
    Oops ! Missed just one more from DTIC .

    Say uncle, or we'll find even more

    Accession Number : ADA212057

    Title : Effect Analysis of U.S. Military Aid to the Republic of Korea.

    Descriptive Note : Master's thesis,

    Corporate Author : NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA

    Personal Author(s) : Choi, Tae Y. ; Lee, Su G.

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